This Cheddar Bacon Ranch Tortellini Salad is packed with smoky bacon, thinly sliced green onion and sharp cheddar cheese all dressed in a buttermilk Ranch dressing. It's perfect for holiday occasions, picnics, barbecues or potluck parties. It's designed to be a hit no matter when it's served.
Easy Cheddar Bacon Ranch Tortellini Salad Recipe
My family seems to be rather obsessed with the combination of cheese, bacon and ranch dressing. It seems no matter how it's incorporated into a dish be it with or without chicken, they go gaga over it. I admit, I kinda sorta like it, too. My Chicken Bacon Ranch Pull Apart Rolls and Chicken Bacon Ranch Layer Salad both went absolutely viral on Pinterest, and for good reason. They're simple to make and packed with homestyle flavors that always satisfy.
How to Make the Best Cheddar Bacon Ranch Tortellini Salad Recipe
Pasta salads are so easy and fun to make and versatile to boot. You can serve them alongside a plethora of entrees, or add chicken and enjoy them all on their own as a light meal on a sultry summer day. Using tortellini in a chilled salad makes it possible to enjoy it as a light main dish meal as well as a tasty side dish expanding its usability.
- Ingredients you'll need to make homemade Cheddar Bacon Ranch Tortellini Salad: Refrigerated or frozen cheese tortellini, mayonnaise, sour cream, buttermilk, dry Ranch Salad dressing mix, (i.e. Hidden Valley) garlic powder, onion powder, lemon pepper, shredded sharp cheddar cheese, cooked and crumbled bacon and green onions.
- Kitchen gadgets you'll need: A pasta pot or large pot to cook the tortellini, a skillet to cook the bacon, mixing bowl, whisk, cheese grater, measuring cups and spoons, sharp knife and chopping board.
- You can transform this tortellini salad into a main dish with the addition of 2 cups of chopped rotisserie chicken.
- You can adapt this recipe using a different flavor of shredded cheese such as colby jack or pepper jack, if that's your preference.
- When cooking the tortellini, follow the package instructions adapting depending on if they're refrigerated or frozen. I typically use whichever is on sale for making this tortellini salad as both will turn out delicious.
- Store leftover Cheddar Bacon Ranch Tortellini Salad well chilled in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
More Southern Style Cheese Tortellini Dishes and Pasta Recipes to Make
Another variation of a salad using cheese tortellini is this potluck Layered Southwestern Cheese Tortellini Salad which serves as a beautiful centerpiece, too. If Mediterranean flavors are more your vibe checkout this Greek Tortellini Salad from Two Peas And Their Pod. An Italian twist, my Supreme Pizza Tortellini Salad is packed with flavor. If soup is more to your liking, tortellini shines in this recipe for Creamy Tomato Cheese Tortellini Soup that really hits the spot on a cool day.
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Helpful Kitchen Items:
Cheddar Bacon Ranch Tortellini Salad
- 1 20 oz refrigerated or frozen cheese tortellini
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- ½ cup buttermilk or milk
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 0.4 oz package dry buttermilk ranch salad dressing mix i.e. Hidden Valley
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon lemon pepper
- ½ teaspoon dried dill
- 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- ½ lb bacon cooked and crumbled
- 1 bunch green onion thinly sliced
- 2 cups roughly chopped rotisserie chicken (Optional see Cook's note)
- Cook the tortellini in salted water per the package instructions. Drain well and set aside to cool slightly.
- Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl whisk together the mayonnaise, buttermilk, sour cream, ranch dressing mix, garlic power, onion powder, lemon pepper and dill.
- Toss cooked tortellini with dressing. Mix well. Add cheese, bacon, and green onion to the bowl. Mix until evenly coated. (May reserve some of each to garnish, if desired) Add chicken, if using.
- Serve immediately warm or place into the fridge to chill for several hours before serving. Garnish as desired.
Does this salad keep well in the fridge? If I were to make it for my weekly meal prep would it do okay do you think?
Hi Erin, this salad will keep for 2-3 days. Beyond that, it might not hold up quite as well.
I have a question on this recipe. I have a hard time handling dairy productsso I would not be able to use milk in this, would coconut milk yield the same results?
Hi Danielle, the purpose of the milk is to thin the dressing. If you've had good results with a product you can tolerate then by all means, give it a whirl.
I make a recipe that’s very similar. Absolutely delicious! It’s in my normal rotation. I swap out the cheddar with chunks of pepper jack cheese, add some cubed ham and splash a bit of hot sauce in the sauce.
Very nice additions, it's fun to mix things up from time to time!